Friday, 9 April 2010

NewHythe 8th & 9th April

Two fairly short visits to New Hythe this week, both in glorious spring weather at last. The warm weather is certainly bringing out the butterflies and Peacocks seem the most abundant right now.



The whole site is alive with Blackcap and Chiffchaff now. I hope we see the same sort of numbers of some of the other migrants which haven't yet arrived, such as Nightingale and Whitethroat, although I have heard that one of the latter has already been seen near the Sunken Marsh. It was in the Sunken Marsh yesterday that I saw at least one, probably two Linnets. This is a good species to see at NH, in previous years it's taken me until May to see them, usually on the East Scrub. I also saw Buzzard, Kestrel and Sparrowhawk in the Marsh area yesterday and today I noticed 4 Sparrowhawks circling together above the Railway lake which was really good to see.


The young Newt pictured below was found under a board on the East Scrub. I guess it's a Smooth Newt which I think is the most common but i'm not sure and I didn't want to pick him up to look for clues for fear of damaging him.


There are a few Willow Warblers in the Country Park side of the site but I haven't yet heard or seen one on the Brooklands side for some reason. While I was watching a Willow Warbler in the East Scrub I noticed this Bee Fly (below) I think it's Bombylius Major which is the most common species. Some people think the long proboscis is a sting but it's actually used to obtain nectar and the insect is completely harmless.



Although Peacocks seem the most common butterfly at New Hythe at the moment, I also saw a few Comma's over the last couple of days and today I also spotted a Brimstone but as usual it was stopping for nobody.


This male blackcap was singing his lovely song along the railway path and he was in the company of a female. A picture of the two of them together would have been nice but I don't think they've known each other very long so she was a bit shy.


Finally a picture of a Swan on her nest on the edge of Brookland lake. There are no eggs yet but hopefully that will change in the next few days and i'm looking forward to seeing a good brood in the weeks to come.


Warren Baker said...

surprised you've not had a Nightingale at NH yet Phil. They will be here in the next 4 days, with the cuckoo!

Steve said...

Nice newt eft. Virtually impossible to tell them apart at this stage.

Ken Browne. said...

Hi Phil.
Great selection of wildlife photo's. Looks like you had all bases covered. As for the 4 Sparrowhawk's, well you don't do things by halves, do you :-)